Two youngsters rescued from tea farms by well-wishers join Form One

Sarah Khanali at work in a farm in Maria-ini village in Gatundu North before a businessman Kenneth Wamburu offered to take her to school.

Two youngsters in Gatundu North have been rescued from tea farms and taken to school after well-wishers who understood their plight showed up to help them, having given up and forgotten all about joining secondary school.

One of them is a bright boy from Kimiili village in Gatundu North who has been preoccupying himself with picking tea in neighbouring tea farms with his parents with an aim of raising his school fees.

Waweru, who scored 322 marks in last year’s KCPE, aspired to become a lawyer but his star had already dimmed after failing to progress with his studies.

But when businessman Peter Kamau, the proprietor of Dhahabu Lands Limited, promised to walk with him his education journey at Kahugu-ini Boys High School, hope was rekindled.

An elated Waweru promised to repay the kind support and gesture by working hard in his studies and posting outstanding results.

“I had given up on joining high school because my parents cannot afford. I am grateful because of the help I’ve received. He is godsend and I will repay him by excelling in my academics,” Waweru said.

Brian Waweru steps into Kahugu-ini Secondary School in Gatundu South after being rescued from tea farms by businessman Peter Kamau.

Kahugu-ini Principal George Mungai said the school will mentor the boy and offer him moral and psychosocial support to ensure that he concentrates on his studies and excels.

The other one, a girl in Maria-ini village, had a similar story – she joined her mother in tea farms to try to raise money to go to school.

Sarah Khanali, 16, scored 299 marks to be admitted to Our Lady of Fatima Kiriko Girls Secondary School, but acute poverty kept her home and about, looking for tea-picking labour to figure out if she could make it to secondary school from the proceeds.

However, the agonizing sleepless nights came to an end when a kind-hearted businessman with the same childhood experiences offered to pay her four-year school fees.

Kenneth Wamburu, the proprietor of Imara Lands Investment Ltd, told journalists that the girl’s setbacks touched him when he read about her plight on this platform.

“Khanali’s story is similar to mine. We were both raised by single mothers. While she was working in tea farms, I was working in coffee farms seeking to put food on the table and raise school fees. I was also helped by a well-wisher and that’s why I have taken it upon myself to take her to school,” Wamburu said.

Khanali, who couldn’t hide her tears of joy, promised to focus on her studies and post good results.

The girl, who aspires to be a medical doctor, said she will work hard until she achieves her dream of freeing her mother and siblings from the shackles of poverty.

Sarah Khanali picking tea at a farm in Maria-ini village in Gatundu North. She has been taken to Our Lady of Fatima Kiriko Girls secondary school.

Brian Waweru after joining Kahugu-ini secondary school in Gatundu South.

By Kamau Njoroge

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